Common hernia symptoms include a visible protrusion in the abdominal or groin area, pain or discomfort while lifting, a dull aching feeling and a feeling of fullness, according to Cleveland Clinic. Hernias may occur in men and women of any age.
There are several kinds of hernias, including inguinal, incisional, femoral and hiatal, and they occur when an organ or fatty tissue protrudes through the surrounding muscle or connective tissue, explains WebMD. Inguinal hernias occur when the intestine or bladder squeezes through the wall of the abdomen or into the inguinal canal located in the groin. Incisional hernias occur when the intestine protrudes through an opening in the abdominal wall at the location of a prior surgery. Femoral hernias result from the intestine entering the canal that carries the femoral artery into the upper thigh. A hiatal hernia occurs when the upper portion of the stomach pushes through an opening in the diaphragm where the esophagus passes.
Anything that causes pressure in the abdomen can trigger a hernia, such as lifting heavy objects, diarrhea, constipation and excessive coughing or sneezing, notes WebMD. Factors that increase the risk of a hernia include obesity, poor nutrition and smoking.
Treatment for a hernia depends on the size of the hernia and the severity of symptoms, explains Healthline. Non-invasive treatment options include dietary changes, eating smaller meals and keeping a healthy body weight. Severe hernias require surgical repair.